June 9, 2015
The Senior Volunteer assigned to the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management(ODPEM), Mr. Haruo Kubo arrived in Jamaica in July 2013. After a few months, he started advising on the evaluation of drainage design calculations associated with development application for new houses.
As Jamaica continues to experience a shortfall in housing solutions, the need to increase the delivery of housing units persists and consequently subdivision applications received for processing were more than 100 per year.
Shortly after beginning this advisory role, he recognized that as it stands, the design and calculation procedures applied in most of the drainage design reports submitted only considers the project site and not the entire watershed, there was also no uniformity of calculation formulas and coefficients. Additionally, some of the existing guidelines (January 1984) are not suitable as they do not account for increased frequency and intensity of meteorological weather systems as forecasted by climate change projections. Moreover some new project development area could be affected by flooding because of insufficient drainage facilities.
Therefore, he decided to initiate the process of totally revising the existing drainage guidelines.
He began by gathering relevant data regarding drainage design, consulting with developers and engineering consultants and then proceeded to develop the draft Guidelines. Once the initial draft was completed, a technical working group was established comprising the ODPEM, National Works Agency and Water Resources Authority to finalize the Guidelines through discussions with several stakeholders such as Meteorological Service, Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing etc.
In April 2015, the draft final Guidelines were presented at the Technical Review Committee at the National Environment and Planning Agency, which has responsibility for approval of development applications. In May, a multi-stakeholder workshop was held with the participation of government agencies, engineering consultants and developers. The newly revised the Drainage Design Guidelines was then completed incorporating all the opinions and suggestions from the workshop.
The launch ceremony for the new Guidelines was held on June 9, 2015. In attendance were The Honorable Noel Arscott; Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Dr. The Honorable Morais Guy; Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing and Dr. The Honorable Omar Davies; Minister of Transport, Works and Housing who gave the Keynote address.
These Guidelines are being revised for the first time in 30 years in Jamaica and will significantly help to streamline the approach to storm water drainage design. This will help to reduce disaster risk and associated economic and human losses from the implementation of new development projects.
These Guidelines will take effect on July 1, 2015.
At the Launch Ceremony: From left, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing; Local Government Minister Noel Arscott; Transport, Works and Housing Minister Dr. Omar Davies; Transport, Works and Housing State Minister Dr. Morais Guy; Mr. Haruo Kubo, JICA Senior Volunteer; Mr.Howard Prendergast, Senior Civil Engineer, National Works Agency; Mr. Christopher Gayle, Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management
New Drainage Design Guidelines Cover
At the Launch Ceremony Reception: Mr. Kubo, Staff of NWA and ODPEM
At the Launch Ceremony: From left, Mr. Hiromoto Oyama, Charge d’Affairs, Embassy of Japan in Jamaica; Mr. Kenji Tobita, Resident Representative, JICA Jamaica Office; Transport, Works and Housing Minister Dr. Omar Davies; Transport, Works and Housing State Minister Dr. Morais Guy